Also called mosquito plant, Texas hummingbird mint, and double bubble mint, this herbaceous perennial is native to New Mexico and western Texas where it grows on dry slopes of mountainous areas at altitudes between 5,000 and 6,000 feet. It is a member of the mint family (Lamiaceae) that also includes herbs such as basil and rosemary as well as garden plants such as salvia and coleus. The plants have a woody base and are very well branched with aromatic blue-green leaves that are oval and 1. 1/2” long by ½” wide. The pink to purple tubular flowers are carried in whorls on loose terminal spikes in late spring. They have the scent of mint bubblegum and are attractive to hummingbirds as well as bees and butterflies. A good choice for borders, containers, and informal cottage gardens.
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Bloom: Loose terminal spikes of pink to purple flowers in late spring
Size: 24-36” x 18” W
Light: Full sun; tolerates some shade.
Soil: Fertile, moderately moist, well-drained
Hardiness: Zones 5-10
Care: Feed slow release fertilizer in spring; water deeply when soil is dry; deadhead to encourage rebloom; prune back after killing frost.
Pests and Diseases: Generally healthy but powdery mildew and rust can be a problem in dry weather
Propagation: Divide in spring
Companion plants: Purple cone flowers, Russian sage, globe thistle “Taplow Blue’, hollyhock mallow ‘Fastigiata’, speedwell ‘Icicle’, white culver’s root